Swimming upstream

Tigersharks perform well at regional meet


file photo

Story by Joseph Asher, staff writer

The Texas High Tigersharks performed well at the UIL Region 4-5A Championships, with 19 swimmers and divers qualifying for the state championship meet.

Both the boys and the girls team dominated the competition, winning the overall meet. Two individual awards were given to senior Courtney Lourens for diver of the meet and senior Kristen Clayton for swimmer of the meet.

“I thought I did well, but I hope to do better at state. I was really excited to receive a big honor,” Clayton said. “I think the team has great things in store for state and next year. I just hope to improve my times for state and make finals.”

The relay teams did especially well with the boys and girls winning first in the 200 medley relay and the 400 free relay. Both relay teams will advance to state to compete.

The boy’s did really well in their individual events as well, junior Jett Wolf placed second in his 100 breast with a new personal record.

“I swam my fastest and the closest race at the meet,” Wolf said. “When I finished everyone was silent for a second, then they started cheering seconds later.”

Of the dive team, Courtney Lourens placed first and sophomore Serenity Danner placed second for the girls, while senior Jacob Mitchmore placed second for the boys. These three will go on to compete at state.

“We had a decent meet but we definitely could have done better. I’m super proud of all the divers because they tried their hardest and that’s what matters,” Lourens said. “I was very nervous for this meet because there was so much on the line. However, receiving diver of the meet was great. State will be a new ball game and we will just have to play it by ear and try our hardest.”

The boys all placed top six with Mitchmore in second, freshman Eli Lammers in fourth, junior Robert Bland in fifth and sophomore Joshua Asher in sixth.

“I did well individually but as a team the divers struggled a bit,” Mitchmore said. “Overall the whole team did excellent.”

For swim, the top two finishers of each event will advance to state. Several of the swimmers qualified. Those who are seated first and second in their event should place high in the state championships.  

“I’m really happy with how I did. I was expecting to make state in my relays, but wasn’t expecting to go to state individually,” junior Kaylee Norton said. “State is going to be tough but I’m excited for it.”

Overall the Tigersharks performed extremely well, even with some difficulties dealing with illnesses and disqualifications.

“I think I did okay at regionals. Not as well as I wanted to do individually, but I think that was because I got the flu three days before. I think the team did really well. We were prepared and through the seriousness of the competition we still had fun,” Norton said. “The people there are way faster than us so we really try to have fun and beat our own personal times. I’m excited to see how we do there this year.

It was a win for the Texas High Tigersharks at regionals and their next goal is to move onto finals at State in Austin on February 16-17. There will be 24 swimmers and divers in each event and top 16 from each event will progress onto finals. The meet will be held at the Lee & Joe Jamail Swim Center on the campus of The University of Texas at Austin.

Of the many swimmers and divers competing at state, there are a few that are seated high up on the list of placing in the top. Top seeds for the boys are Jackson Shellogg in the 100 free seeded 18th and boys 200 free relay is also seeded 18th.  Owen Likins is seeded 21st in the 500 free. Top seeds for the girls are the 200 medley relay seeded 21st and Haley Wood seeded 21st in the 100 breast. In dive, Courtney Lourens is seeded 19th. Jacob Mitchmore and Serenity Danner are both seeded 23rd.